Several reports, including WVMetroNews.com and Mike Casazza for the Charleston Daily Mail, are detailing the return of former safeties coach, Bruce Tall to the Mountaineer football staff. Tall served under Rich Rodriguez in Morgantown from 2003-2007 and followed him to Michigan in 2007. He's been the defensive coordinator at UNC Charlotte for the last four seasons. Tall is reportedly taking over the defensive line.
Where does that leave the staff? Numbers-wise, it's complete. Responsibilities-wise, not so much.
Casazza's report states that all of the assistants who had expiring contracts have all re-upped (Jajuan Seider, Brian Mitchell and Lonnie Galloway for 2 years with raises and DeForest with a one year deal for a lower salary). So unless someone leaves, the defensive side of the staff is quite a bit heavier than the offensive side and no one else will be hired as the Offensive Coordinator. Of course that title is somewhat misleading as Head Coach Dana Holgorsen calls the plays anyway.
If no more changes to personnel, Coach Holgorsen would likely take care of the quarterbacks, which he's always had a hand in, regardless. Here's the staff as we see it now (with the defensive side likely to get shuffled a bit more):
- Offensive Line - Ron Crook
- Running Backs - JaJuan Seider (Run Game Coordinator?)
- Wide Receivers - Lonnie Galloway (Pass Game Coordinator?)
- Defensive Coordinator - Tony Gibson
- Defensive Line - Bruce Tall
- Linebackers - Damon Cogdell? Tom Bradley?
- Cornerbacks - Brian Mitchell
- Safeties - Joe DeForest
The name that gets bandied about most as leaving would be Tom Bradley. While it would be a huge loss, it would certainly be understandable if he wants more responsibilities. He could stay (I certainly hope he does) and this could be your 2015 Mountaineer Football staff. We'll see how everything shakes out.